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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 4 Hansard (7 May) . . Page.. 1193..

MR HANSON: Minister, given these latest incidents, what will you be doing to assure the community that the information you are promulgating is reaching its target audience?

MS GALLAGHER: As I said, we will be reviewing the situation that led to the poisoning of the individuals. I am trying not to disclose any private information. Indeed, we are already aware, as much as we can be, because two of the individuals have been discharged from hospital, about what led to the situation for them. We will review it and if we need to do more we will work with multicultural organisations, in particular, to make sure that the message is there, that it is clear.

I am not sure, in my review of the situation, that anything more could have been done in this instance but we will keep an open mind and see whether we need to change the information we have got and how we get that information out. I am happy to brief people not in the chamber on that, just to assure you that I do not think any changes to what we had in place would have necessarily changed the outcome we saw over the last month.

Schools—online enrolments

MR GENTLEMAN: My question is to the minister for education. Minister, you recently announced that parents would be able to enrol their children in ACT schools online. Can you inform the Assembly how this reduction of red tape will make it easier for parents to engage with their schools?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Gentleman for his interest. Many members would be aware that traditionally enrolment in our schools, the public schools and colleges, was completed using printed application forms. There was often a great deal of paperwork and waiting lines at the front offices of many ACT public schools at the commencement of the enrolment period on the first day of term 2. Families of students transferring between schools were required to complete additional paper-based forms. This was a process that many parents and students thought they could do without. We have agreed with them. We thought we could do better, and we have.

The government has developed a new online enrolment form for all ACT public school enrolments and transfers. The new process for enrolment was introduced on 28 April this year, with the start of the school term. The online form replaces all existing paper-based forms and simplifies the enrolment and transfer process for families. It makes the process easier and faster for parents, and much more efficient for our schools.

I am advised that the ACT is the first jurisdiction to implement a fully online enrolment and transfer procedure. The new enrolment process provides a single online form for all year levels, from preschool to year 12. It removes the need for parents to complete multiple enrolment forms and it improves consideration of siblings in the enrolment process. It removes the differences in enrolment processes between the primary schools, high schools and colleges.

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